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28th February 2012

Vodafone - Visa announce global mobile wallet

Vodafone and Visa announced a worldwide mobile payments partnership. This was dubbed as the world's largest mobile partnership. It links to both Visa Inc and Visa Europe with the intention to offer it across all 30 countries Vodafone operates in. The parties say of the deal "The partnership - the largest of its kind between a global payment network and mobile operator - combines the companies’ global reach and expertise to bring Visa payment functionality to consumers around the world".


The mobile payment proposition is to be based on the Visa prepaid account and is to be launched first in "Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, Turkey, and the UK, starting in the coming financial year. Other countries within Vodafone's global portfolio will follow."
Vodafone's financial year starts 1st April.


The organisations say they will welcome other partners: "In addition to the Vodafone-branded stored value account inside the mobile wallet, Vodafone and Visa will work together to enable Visa Issuers for mobile payments globally. The platform will be open to all partners of all relevant industries, including financial institutions, retailers, transport and utility companies to host their services within an innovative new Vodafone mobile wallet."


Peter Ayliffe, CEO of Visa Europe, said: "Our partnership with Vodafone represents a huge stride forward for mobile payments. Visa’s future of payments initiative is more than just a promise: these services are real, tangible and coming to the mainstream consumer market in the very near future. Any Visa Issuer across these key markets will be able to work with Visa and Vodafone to enable mobile payments for their customers, backed by all the security, trust and global acceptance the Visa brand represents."

"The convergence of global payment networks, such as VisaNet, with leading mobile telecommunication networks, such as Vodafone, has the potential to transform the way people pay and get paid the world over," said John Partridge, President, Visa Inc. “Visa’s relationship with Vodafone will assist financial institutions in both developed and developing countries to offer Visa-quality payments to new and existing account holders."


Vodafone had previously announced mobile payment syndicates with other Mobile Network Operators in the UK and separately in Germany. Presumably these are now abandoned.